The Towns and Cities of Northern Ontario
Dryden Ontario in Sunset Country
Once a gold mining region, Dryden lies on Highway 17 between Kenora and Thunder Bay .
The Dryden area was part of the Ojibwa nation and it is believed that the Bending Lake/Turtle River area was a meeting place for aboriginal peoples for trade and cultural exchange and there is still evidence of ancient occupancy there in the form of pictographs, artifacts and burial grounds.
The railway provided access and because of the woodland, timber concessions were granted. A sawmill, a hotel, and several small general stores were established within months of the arrival of the first settlers. By 1905 Gold Rock (a neighbouring mining town) was in serious decline, and Dryden became the commercial centre for the area. Dryden has had continued steady growth in its commercial sector, and with the development of the highway Dryden was now at the centre of Northwestern Ontario .
Construction of a new mill began in 1910 and since that time, it has undergone many facelifts and has now evolved into a world-class facility.
The steady increase in traffic on the Trans-Canada Highway along with Dryden's geographical position between Winnipeg and Thunder Bay resulted in a very large commercial center serving the tourist trade. Fishing and hunting lodges abound in the area along with many outfitters that will ensure a pleasant and memorable holiday.
Aaron Provincial Park also has an interesting history. In the mid 1990�s this park was closed due to budgetary constraints and the City of Dryden pursued the possibility of operating the park ensuring that the park remains open. Since the Park's reopening in 1997, the park has experienced an increase in users. The park now boasts top quality customer service and a dedication by all involved. Dryden prides itself in Aaron Provincial Park - a clean, peaceful family campground.